Where did this year go? Seriously, this year has flown! FLOWN I TELL YA! What happened... how is it already December? Anyone else feeling this way? I feel like I was at my family's ranch celebrating the new year 2011 just yesterday. It baffles me that we will be doing that again in just another week.
Christmas is here! Usually I would say finally, because I am anxiously awaiting it. This year, I don't want it to be here yet... I want ONE MORE WEEK to relax and take in all the beautiful decorations and enjoy family and friends. Do you think we could add another week to December? Any takers? I'll make it happen, I just need three more takers, and I'll snap my fingers and we will get an extra week! Just three more... (I figure one isn't enough, two could be but then might have a "secret extra week club" that no one else would know about so that wouldn't work, and three would be enough to spread the word).
Since I don't think I will find three takers, I better stop typing and get out there and take in as much Christmas cheer, family and friend camaraderie, and eggnog as I can!
I hope you all are finding time for all of this as well. Wishing you a peaceful and joyful Christmas week filled with love and family!
Well, that about sums up my post, so there you have it. ;) Andrew and I attended two weddings in New Orleans over the past two weekends, six days apart, and I was in both of them which meant getting there the day before for the rehearsal dinners as well. We drove to New Orleans for the first, and flew the second. I HIGHLY recommend flying!! 6 hours vs. 3 (which includes getting to the airports and to the destinations)... I will take the latter ANY DAY! Both weddings were so special, so beautiful in their own unique ways! I feel so honored to have been a part of two of my best friends', who both happened to be sorority sisters from LSU, weddings!
I will admit, I am a little over New Orleans. If you don't live there, two weekends in a row will play a major toll on you! Instead of writing yet another long post of our New Orleans experiences, below are some pictures from these beautiful weddings! ENJOY!
~CONGRATULATIONS TO KASEY AND JONATHAN WHITLEY~
Just before the rehearsal, Andrew and I stopped to grab a drink at a local sushi bar.
Groomsmen + Groom
Bridesmaids... look how freakishly tall I look compared to the other girls... in my defense, I am wearing freakishly tall heals!
Ring bearer and one of the flower girls.
Beautiful bride and her padre
haha... this one makes me laugh.
Bride and Mother of the Bride
Grandmother of the Bride and Bride
Kasey, Lea, and Me
Good looking Bride and Groom!
Best Man with the Groom
Groom's Sisters, Kristin and Jessica, and Best friend, Angie
LOVED the name plates!
Matron of Honor with the Bride-to-be!
Couldn't help but take another shot!
Quick Shot in Front of the Trolley!
Kasey and Jonathan's First Dance
Oh hey, there's Andrew and me!
The Other Flower Girl... they were so precious!
Brad, Kaki, Andrew and me
Love you Kasey!
Kasey with the flower girls!
Just before the cake pull! (I GOT THE FLEUR DE LIS!)
THETA LADIES! (Sorry Ash, Andrew isn't the best photographer)
haha this was my idea for the guys to pick up the bride, but I couldn't get a good one with Kasey looking...
MY FAVORITE ONE!
Meg and Me!
My handsome husband
The next couple of shots are our few attempts for a Christmas photo... bear with me.
YAY, we got to see Ann and Josh Courtney! <3 you guys
I have seen this on a few of my friend's blogs and thought it was a GREAT idea to be able to share the things I am enjoying right now, and be able to look back later and remind myself of these wonderful things. So here it goes!
1. Sugar Free/Fat Free Jell-o Pudding: I LOVE putting 2 tablespoons of this in my protein shakes every morning! It makes a VERY THICK (and delicious) shake!
2 tbs Sugar Free/Fat Free Jell-o Pudding of Choice (FAVORITES: Vanilla, Chocolate Fudge, Pistachio, and Cheesecake. LEAST FAVORITES: Butterscotch & Banana Creme) (50 calories)
1/2 cup Fat Free Cottage Cheese (80 calories)
1/2 cup Water
1 scoop of favorite protein (100 calorie serving)
2 Splenda Packets (less than 10 Calories)
2 LARGE handfuls of ice
BLEND WELL!! It is less than 250 calories and almost fills 2 Solo cups! EAT WITH A SPOON AND ENJOY! Very filling my friends!
2. Nike Element Half-Zip Running Top: This isn't the exact one I have, but close enough! Mine has built in pockets by the wrists for the hands to hide in. It has a double shield protection, isn't too hot, but better than any other cover-up I have to block wind!
3. My Charlemagne Scentsy: If you don't have one yet... GET ONE! If you have one, you know what I am talking about! I L-O-V-E mine so much that I have 2! They come in all different designs and make the entire room smell delicious! Favorite scents: Home Sweet Home, Honey Pear Cider, & Vanilla Creme
4. Swiss Miss - Sensible Sweets, Diet 25 Calories Hot Chocolate: With the cold weather in full swing, I go crazy with this! I usually double the packets and add a splenda! YUMMMMMY!
5. LAST, but CERTAINLY not least: ELF: I could watch this every day and NEVER get sick of it! "BUDDY THE ELF, WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE COLOR?" It just makes me happy and giddy inside!
I decided to go for a casual leisure run this afternoon. As I turned the corner off my street, two blocks ahead I noticed three lawn men with two machetes and a pair of garden shears violently cutting up large branches in a driveway way too close to the street for comfort.
**WRITER'S NOTE: I am not prejudice to the fact that they were lawn men. They could have been home owners for that matter... it was the fact that they had machetes and garden shears in hand that seriously alarmed me**
My mind immediately turned on near-death thoughts. All of these terrible thoughts began to go through my head. One example: If I run down that road, those three guys were going to chase me down, decapitate me and chop me up into a trillion pieces and throw my dead body into the bottom of the ocean. (HORRIBLE RIGHT!?!? ... WHO THINKS THESE THOUGHTS? Apparently, and unfortunately, me.)
Being the intellectual and practical person that I am, I figured I had three options:
1. Turn around, run home as fast as I can screaming and crawl in a corner and hide.
2. Turn left early on the road before I reach them to spare them a murder and my life.
3. Run past them, get over my stupid fear, and realize they are just doing their job and probably nice guys.
Which option did I pick? Of course, the most logic, especially after thoughts like mine, and I picked option #1. ...just kidding. I picked option #3, seriously. As I was getting closer, I felt all of my nerves tingle throughout my body, I picked up the pace. One of the workmen smiled and nodded, and I waved and sprinted by as fast as my legs could take me. I couldn't help but turn and look behind me every mili-second to make sure they weren't following me because lets face it, had my horrible visual actually come true, whose going to win, them or me?
Let's weigh out the pros and cons: Pros:
1. I run every day.
2. I am prepared for them to chase me.
3. I could probably out-run them in distance, but pace... I don't know.
1. They have machetes and garden shears in hand.
2. They work out all day... probably way more fit than I am.
3. There were three of them and one of me.
4. Surprise attack... just saying.
Looks like the cons outweigh the pros and I would lose.
What I was left with was a heart beat pounding a million miles an hour, and a huge adrenaline rush that I had not felt in a long time. I began to think about what I would do in that kind of situation, and let's face it, when it comes to flight or fight, I am definitely FLIGHT! I want to get as far as I possibly can from any kind of scary, uncomfortable, unwanted situation, and I don't want to stop until I know I am as far away as I possibly can be!
These thoughts took over my mind like poison as I ran, and suddenly my navigation on my phone beeped.
TIME: 8 minutes, 04 seconds. DISTANCE: 1 point 0 mile.
I came back to reality: That can't be right... I was just going out for a leisurely run. How can I be running that fast, and not feel like I am pushing myself? I then realized that my motivator was those two machetes and garden shears. It gave me that extra energy to run harder and faster without exerting energy when in flight mode. This made me feel much better about my "flight" status. I used to think of it as a flaw, but at least I know I can run and probably get away from most situations and keep it together mentally.
I decided to imagine those three men chasing me for mile two with their scary machetes and garden shears, my mind began focus on getting away and nothing more. I didn't feel like I was pushing myself very hard, but I felt like I was getting away.
TIME: 15 minutes, 54 seconds, DISTANCE: 2 point 0 miles AVERAGE TIME: 7 minutes 57 seconds per hour.
HOLY MOLY... its working!
As I approached my last mile (yes, I have been cutting back a lot on my running, just trying to enjoy it again), I kept this thought process. As I reached half a mile away from my house, I realized my three mile loop came back around to the same three men that started this whole crazy thought process in the beginning. Was I crazy to run by them AGAIN and take that chance? Had I been given a "Pass Go" the first time around? Would I be lucky enough to get it again? Should I turn around? Did I do this on purpose? No... I can do this again! (Maybe I did it for that extra adrenaline rush to push hard in the end?)
I hit my third mile feeling great, not even out of breath and I heard:
TIME: 23 minutes, 21 seconds DISTANCE: 3 miles AVERAGE PACE: 7 minutes, 47 seconds.
Okay, I know that time isn't that amazing... but for not pushing myself or feeling out of breathe and just running to save my life, I WAS PRETTY DANG PROUD OF MYSELF!
So I ask you: WHAT'S YOUR MOTIVATION? Is it being chased by a murderer as well? Do you run towards something like your trying to get somewhere? Do you run for something or someone? For margaritas? (That used to be mine! ;) )
Confession: I always get a little bummed December 26th, because the holiday season has passed and I have to wait another entire year for it to return. **The negatives of getting too excited about EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME** So as you can imagine, I am usually counting down the days for December to arrive in anticipation and excitement of the upcoming Holiday Season.
Reality: I cannot believe how quickly it arrived! We have been so busy this year with training for marathons/half marathons, buying a house, moving, weddings... you name it, that the Holiday Season kind of creeped up on me this year.
So with the Holiday Season in full swing, and due to my lack of being a committed and reliable blogger: I hereby vow to try to post more this Christmas Season with all of the exciting events coming up this month. Most importantly...
HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Don't forget the reason for the season!